PHOTO: New York City FC announce final badge designs, which do you like best?

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With New York City Football Club readying themselves to enter Major League Soccer in 2015, the club have now narrowed their search for a new club badge down to two selections.

And NYC FC (still not sure if that catchy moniker will stick…) have given you the chance to vote on which badge they will call their own when the club begins play in the Big Apple in less than 12 months.

Voting runs from today until Thursday March 13 and the winner will be announced on March 20. Both designs come from designer Rafael Esquer and have been chosen by NYC FC after an extensive search for the right team logo.

The first design on the right is my personal favorite with the rounded outline inspired by the old NYC subway token and the initials of NYC placed on top of each other, it resembles a similar design to the logo of the New York Yankees and New York Mets. It is simple, fresh and just seems like a badge that can be plastered across baseball caps, shirts and apparel across the globe to become instantly recognizable.

Of course the alternative, pictured on the left, isn’t entirely different but I feel like the fancy pants outline of the crest is just a little too over the top and there are too many colors going on. The shield design is inspired by world soccer but also the “historic shield of the official Seal of New York City – a mark that signifies the pioneering spirit of the early settlers,” according to the release from NYC FC. I’m still sticking with first option, keep it simple, folks. That’s my two cents on this, anyway.

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The shield look “signifies the pioneering spirit of the early settlers” in NYC.

Both are strong badges and great designs.

In a unique and pretty cool twist, you have your chance to vote for whatever badge you prefer, with fans of other MLS teams (ahem, New York Red Bulls) surely set to vote for the most unpopular option to try and scupper NYC FC’s look. Or perhaps not… We shall see.

Claudio Reyna, Sporting Director of New York City FC, is excited to launch the vote and give the people of NYC the chance to select a key component of the club’s identity.

“This badge is to be the symbol of our Club, a symbol of our players and we hope in time, a symbol of this City.  That is why we decided to give our fans the power to take part in such a fundamental way,” Reyna said. “Thanks to the work of Rafael Esquer we feel that we have two designs that truly represent our Club and our City, and we’re excited to see which badge they choose.”

Let us know which badge you prefer in the comments section below. Get voting.

Report: Chelsea line up Tuchel to replace Conte

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Reports in Germany claim Chelsea have met with Thomas Tuchel about replacing Antonio Conte as their manager.

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With relations said to be strained between Conte and Chelsea’s board following a summer of unrest regarding a lack of transfers, the Diego Costa situation and more for the reigning Premier League champions, losing to Arsenal in the Community Shield and then their Premier League opening to Burnley was far from an ideal start.

Still, Conte led Chelsea to the PL title last season, his first in England, with a record 30 wins from 38 games. How is he the bookies favorite to be the next PL manager to leave his job?

Tuchel, 43, has been out of work since leaving Borussia Dortmund at the end of last season and Sport Bild is reporting that Chelsea’s director Marina Granovskaia has approached Tuchel about replacing Conte, while it is also stated that former Barca boss Luis Enrique is a contender.

Could Tuchel succeed at Chelsea and in the Premier League? Of course he could.

At Borussia Dortmund he developed one of the finest attacking teams in Europe with talented youngsters playing in a fluid system. Tuchel didn’t leave Dortmund on good terms and although he was linked with plenty of vacant jobs across Europe, including the Arsenal job if Arsene Wenger stepped down, he remains without a club.

Tuchel is a very good coach but what Conte has done at Chelsea over the past 12 months is a borderline miracle.

The situation regarding Conte and Chelsea does appear to have been blown out of proportion, particularly with the Nemanja Matic situation as Conte was reportedly unwilling to lose his Serbian midfielder but the deal was sanctioned by those above him. Given the fact that Conte signed a new contract this summer but only for improved terms and not for an extended period of time past 2019 also raised alarm bells.

Chelsea fans have, understandably, not reacted too kindly to reports that a successor is being lined up for Conte. The Italian coach is adored by the Blues faithful after leading a rapid rebuild of their squad in his famed 3-4-3 formation last season. His passion on the sidelines is now a hallmark of Chelsea matchdays and if he does leave anytime soon due to issues behind-the-scenes, expect a mutiny from the fans.

Yes, managers have come and gone and frequently and success has remained under Roman Abramovich but hooking Conte may even be a step too far for the notoriously expectant owner.

Barcelona’s Twitter hacked to claim Di Maria signing

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FC Barcelona had eyeballs popping across the Twitterverse for a solid 90 seconds there.

La Liga’s giants Tweeted out a welcome to Angel Di Maria, the current PSG and former Real Madrid star, with the hashtag #DiMariaFCB.

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It was an odd Tweet for 4 a.m. local time, as humourously pointed out by our Andy Edwards, and the hackers were quick to claim credit before any Tweets could be deleted.

So if someone tells you Angel Di Maria is the latest member of Barcelona, be sure to stop the spread of fake news.

On a day where Barca’s reportedly ready to up their bid for Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho, something tells us someone at the Camp Nou is turning over their keys to the club’s social media.

Rescheduled Yankees game moves NYCFC-Houston to Connecticut

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A rescheduled New York Yankees game is moving New York City FC to Connecticut.

Relax, it’s only for a day.

NYCFC will entertain the Houston Dynamo at Rentschler Field at 3 p.m. on Sept. 23 instead of their regular home of Yankee Stadium.

[ MORE: EFL Cup Tues. wrap ]

The club will offer tickets to another match to current ticket holders, and will also discount tickets to the game in East Hartford for fans who hold tickets to the Yankee Stadium game and want to travel for the Dynamo match (More info here, if you are in either of those camps).

This is the third of three scheduled seasons NYCFC will play at Yankee Stadium, and it doesn’t look like it’ll find a new home any time soon.

Given the everyday nature of Major League Baseball, it’s surprising there have not been more conflicts for NYCFC. We just remain hopeful for the day we can watch NYC’s star-studded roster play on a bigger home field.

“Injustice.” “Incomprehensible.” Ronaldo again protests suspension

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The five-game suspension Cristiano Ronaldo received for making contact with an official is not sitting well with the forward.

Better put: it’s still not sitting well.

Six days ago, Ronaldo took to Instagram to say he was being persecuted after his red card in the Spanish Super Cup.

[ MORE: EFL Cup Tues. wrap ]

Tuesday afternoon, he kept up the strong words by saying the suspension is “incomprehensible” and “an injustice.”

Roughly translated, Ronaldo posted, “One more incomprehensible decision. From injustice to injustive, they will never overcome me. And as always I will come back stronger. Thank you to all who have supported me.”

We’ll say this: He’s a really good soccer player.